Dec 7, 2009

Green Tips for Small(er) Businesses.

Cause marketing and going green is triple H-O-T in the business world. Rightfully so, as nowadays determining a business’s level of corporate responsibility has become a staple in the consumer buying process. Companies can hardly ‘fake’ green anymore due to the amount of consumer skepticism and the watchful eye of competitors.

Big name companies are extending their reach and leveraging their green efforts through strategic partnerships with organizations like Greenpeace, World Environment Center (WEC) or the U.S. Department of Energy. And they are sure to let you know. They also invest in capital-intensive solutions, such as low-energy microprocessor chips, solar panels, and LEED building certification.

So how do small businesses go about transforming their company green and making a splash about it? These few tips don’t require a lot of resources but can position your company when the consumer considers green in their buying cycle.

  • Measure your environmental footprint by analyzing monthly utility bills, calculating average monthly KWh usage, and using a greenhouse gas equivalencies calculator. (This is quicker than jumping through hoops to obtain the source breakdown from your energy provider)
  • Plant trees to effectively offset your CO2 emissions. Either do this by yourself or partner with an organization. A climate change calculator can tell you how many trees you need to plant for your organization.
  • Create a recycling program. Distribute collection bins and deliver to the nearest recycling center.
  • Coordinate community service events for employees, especially on Earth Day and Arbor Day.
  • Establish a green coalition to encourage community service. Benefits can include accountability, identifying synergies, and networking among the participating businesses.
  • Investigate your supply chain. Have your partners gone green? What claims do they enable you to make?

No matter how you proceed, your business can always become more socially and environmentally responsible. So make sure your claims are accurate. Ask yourself two questions to get started in the right direction:

  1. What is your business doing to achieve greater sustainability practices?
  2. What are you doing to let your customers know about it?

When you formulate a response, make sure to post it as a comment below. We want to hear about it! Consider green hosting to create an environmentally-friendly website.

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